Ice creep: Massive movement on Mille Lacs

Publish date:

In a scant two minutes, what looked like a glacier pushed off Lake Mille Lacs, moved 50 feet to cross a yard and crept into the back of a home on the west side of the lake on Sunday.

FOX 9 has the eye-popping video from homeowner Bob Schulke’s backyard after the massive wall of ice made landfall on his property. The encroaching slabs and sheets of ice knocked through the back of his house and toppled a pair of support posts from the deck, leaving him fearful that the entire house could be knocked down.

"You could just watch it slide," Schulke said. "It was just unbelievable. I've never seen anything like it in my life."

KSTP reported that stiff winds as high as 30 miles per hour piled up the ice along more than 20 miles of shoreline on the lake, blocking Highway 169 near Garrison in places and causing traffic to back up. Crews worked to keep the lanes clear as the ice kept its relentless movement. The Minnesota Department of Transportation warned motorists to be prepared to slow down and expect delays as crews are on standby in case lanes have to be closed while they clear ice from the road. "With heavy winds and spring ice out, ice flows off Lake Mille Lacs can cross both lanes of the road in little as 15 minutes,” said Jon Beaufeaux, MnDOT acting maintenance supervisor. “The ice flows will likely continue until the wind dies down or shifts direction.”

The station spotted another homeowner using a Bobcat to keep the ice at bay. Twin Pines Resort owner Bill Eno said this was the worst ice situation he has observed in the past two decades.

The situation is similar to what happened last srping, when what was called an "ice tsunami" moved swiftly along the lakeshore, damaging townhomes as strong winds shoved massive slabs from Mille Lacs into adjacent property.

The large lake is not the only one with ice remaining on its surface. A number of lakes are expected to still be iced in by the time of the state fishing opener on May 10.

Next Up